At the beginning of the year, I outlined what my Frugal Goals for the year were going to be. Two of them included spending less money on the “little” things as well as spend less money on eating out. I resolved that I would switch to a cash-only system for these two items, so I could easily limit the spending.
So, how is it going so far?
It was going great until the second to last day of the month. Some moms from my 5 year old's class invited us to meet them at McDonalds to play. Sounds great…but I had already spent all my cash for the month. I was going to decline the invitation, but my husband offered to pull some more money. If it wasn't for this blog, I probably wouldn't have thought too much about it, but I do want to be truthful and accountable. However, I have deducted the amount that I spent from February's cash, and will adjust February's spending down accordingly. I did learn that I should try to save some money for the end of the month, just in case something like that comes up again.
Other Lessons Learned
- I need to have an additional amount of cash set aside for practical items like washing the salt off our cars and other things that you have to pay cash for that I was reluctant to use from my budget.
- Cash burns a hole in my husband's pocket. Since I was getting an allowance, it was only fair that my husband get one too. However, he quickly burned through his in less than half the month (his was much smaller than mine, because mine included the boys too). I believe he spent much more than he did when we used our credit cards for most everything (paid off each month, of course). So, I'm going to hold parts of his money to allocate throughout the month (with his agreement, of course).
I thought we did pretty well, though. I think that knowing exactly how much I had left helped me to make the choices as to what to purchase and when. I look forward to seeing how it goes this month.
Have you tried doing cash only for a budget item? Do you have any tips to help me? For more frugal ideas visit Being Frugal.